What is Customer Relationship Management?
Whether large or small, companies are driven by customer needs and demands. If customers do not buy their products or services, companies wither and die. Managing the customer relationship is like a dance. Each is looking for a way to co-exist on the dance floor and thrives from the movements of the other. If either partner stumbles, the other feels the effect and may trip as well.
There is a popular saying among business professionals, “It is easier to keep a customer, than to find a new one”. This is a very true statement in that once you have entered into the partnership of customer and provider, the ongoing relationship needs to be cultivated and nurtured, but does not need extensive resources to manage if done correctly.
In contrast, if your company does not value the customer relationship after the sale, the initial sales revenue will be short lived. If your customers do not continue to purchase from you due to poor customer service your bottom line will suffer. Repeat business is the lifeblood of any company’s balance sheet. If delivery of the product or service is poor, customers will begin to rely more on your competition for their goods and services, which will obviously take money off the table for you.
Service after the sale is critical in the ongoing success and growth of a company. Your happy customer will become your advocate and bring more customers to your door. Unfortunately an unhappy one will become a barrier in the marketplace and drive business away. The line between the two can be very thin.
Managing the customer is not always about giving in to every demand and sacrificing the company principles and resources where it does not make sense. Managing client expectations and delivering to those expectations is the art of customer relationship management.